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Weekly Newsletter

July, 28 2017

TABLE OF CONTENTS

SU NEWS

CONGRATULATIONS to SU's Steve Kuusisto and other CNY authors : 2013 CNY Book Award Winners

Disability Student Union (DSU) on Citrus TV

Undergraduate Seniors at Syracuse University Can Apply to Be Engagement Scholars;

Spring 2014 course (updated information) EDU 300 - Inclusive Adult Educational Practices

SU Library Web Navigation Assistance for Users with Disabilities

Students invited to be a BE Wise Peer Educator

Invitation: Saturday breakfast serves as fundraiser for Philippines

CALL FOR PAPERS, CONFERENCES, SCHOLARSHIPS, PARTICIPANTS

Call for Papers for a Special Issue of Psychiatric Bulletin: Culturally Informed Psychiatry

CALL FOR PAPERS Performance & Disability Working Group

Call for Proposals 2014 Society for Disability Studies Conference

NEWS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS

Disability Related Articles for the Week

Southwest Airlines to offer closed captioning on wireless inflight entertainment in early 2014

Interesting interview on disability and poetry

Justice Department Seeks to Intervene in Lawsuit Alleging H&R Block’s Tax Preparation Website Is Inaccessible to Individuals with Disabilities

Annual Reports (including 2012-2013) of the Center for the Human Rights of Users and Survivors of Psychiatry

Group advocates for UN disability rights treaty by Anna Merod (Daily Orange)

 


SU News

CONGRATULATIONS to SU's Steve Kuusisto and other CNY authors : 2013 CNY Book Award Winners

CONGRATULATIONS

The YMCA's Downtown Writers Center
Announces the 2013 CNY Book Awards WINNERS!
 
The 2013 CNY Book Award
for Fiction, sponsored by the Gifford Foundation:
PATRICK LAWLER, 
for RESCUERS OF SKYDIVERS SEARCH AMONG THE CLOUDS
 
The 2013 CNY Book Award
for Poetry, sponsored by the CNY Community Foundation:
STEPHEN KUUSISTO, 
for LETTERS TO BORGES  
 
 
 
The 2013 CNY Book Award
for Non-Fiction:
MARK MONMONIER, 
for LAKE EFFECT
 
 
The 2013 CNY Book Award
People's Choice Award, sponsored by WAER:
JENNIFER PASHLEY, 
forTHE CONJURER
 
 

Disability Student Union (DSU) on Citrus TV



Caveats, shared with video producer, and also posted elsewhere:

Rock on, DSU. YAY, Leah Nussbaum, Jordan Feldman, Kanisha Ffriend, and Nick Holzthum

Three things worth mentioning:

1) ASL IS NOT "accredited" (yet) at SU. The ASL program is under review for foreign language acceptance, across the board, but this has NOT YET happened.

2) It would be appropriate to CAPTION this video. The current 'auto' captions have some rather troubling words (which are of course wrong) of a rather vulgar nature, unfortunately. Diane Wiener, DCC Director, has asked the video producer to please update the captioning -- and this won't be an issue. (We have offered assistance, of course.)

3) DSU Advisor Diane's last name is WIENER (IE not EI) and is pronounced WEE-ner not WY-ner. Diane doesn't care all that much about this, but she thought it worth mentioning. She also looks like a gnome in this video, which she thinks is just awesome.

Undergraduate Seniors at Syracuse University Can Apply to Be Engagement Scholars;


Due Jan. 15, 2014 
 
Undergraduate students graduating from Syracuse University in December 2013 or May 2014 can apply to be Imagining America Engagement Scholars or Entrepreneurship Engagement Scholars. The yearlong program supports recent graduates with a strong academic record to become civic-minded professionals or entrepreneurs in Central New York, and to begin graduate studies at Syracuse University through a 24-credit tuition scholarship. Students are selected based on their academic record, their experience with civic engagement or entrepreneurship, a faculty or professional recommendation, and an in-depth interview. 
The Imagining America Engagement Scholars program provides recent graduates with a transition from undergraduate study to employment and graduate education. In addition to the 24-credit tuition scholarship, students have access to professional and faculty mentors, assistance in finding a job, and opportunities for professional development and networking through monthly seminars and the Publicly Active Graduate Education-Central New York Chapter.
The Entrepreneurship Engagement Scholars program provides recent graduates with an opportunity to start a for profit or nonprofit venture. In addition to the 24-credit tuition scholarship, students have professional and faculty mentors and space in the Student Sandbox at The Tech Garden and/or the Couri Hatchery. 
The program's entrepreneurial endeavors in the past have included the following: creating a workspace for freelancers and entrepreneurs; an incubator for product lines designed by SU students; a pop-up shop for art students to promote and sell their work; a free social browsing app; a portable and self-sustained rainwater harvesting system; and a jewelry company that sells handcrafted rings as symbols of female empowerment.
More Information and To Apply
Prospective students are invited to attend one of the following information sessions:
·         Tues., Dec. 3rd: 9:30-10:30 a.m. at Eggers Hall, room 060
·         Fri., Dec. 6th: 3:30-4:30 p.m. at the Hall of Languages, room 207
For information about the Imagining America Engagement Scholars, contact Karen Boland, IA office supervisor, at kcboland@syr.edu and 315-443-8590.
For information about the Entrepreneurship Engagement Scholars, contact Stacey Keefe, executive director, RvD IDEA, at sekeefe@syr.edu and 315-443-7086.

Spring 2014 course (updated information) EDU 300 - Inclusive Adult Educational Practices

Diana "Dee" Katovitch
There was an error on MySlice, saying that the course only met one day per week.  To clarify - the class meets on MWF from 11:40-12:35 in room 108 Hoople.  Prof. Steve Taylor has said that he will accept this course towards the Disability Studies minor, since we study adult education from a disability studies perspective (i.e. strengths-based, self determination, how all learners contribute, etc.)  

Open to undergraduates only.

Diana M. ("Dee") Katovitch
Assistant Director
Lawrence B. Taishoff Center for Inclusive Higher Education
Syracuse University


SU Library Web Navigation Assistance for Users with Disabilities

Library users  with any disabilities may contact Web Navigation Assistance Email (webnav@syr.edu) or call the Learning Commons at 315.443.4083 for assistance using the Library or other academically related websites if desired.  This includes eJournals, databases, Blackboard and more.  The Web Navigation Assistance email is answered by Adina Mulliken, Barbara Jackson, Tarida Anantachai and Charu Chawan.  Web Navigation Assistance attempts to assist users to work around websites' user-friendliness and accessibility problems.  
One typical form of assistance provided has been to locate full text when users have a citation to a book or article.  Full text may be located online, in print, or via interlibrary loan.  Staff will work with users to locate accessible formats if possible, and send inaccessible formats to Office of Disability Services for conversion.  Students may want to consider requesting extra time for assignments when relevant due to the amount of time these processes sometimes take, although we will try our best to assist very quickly.  

More information about access for people with disabilities regarding:
Assistance for All Users
Contact a librarian for your subject area for assistance, or contact general Library reference staff, especially for more immediate help on evenings and weekends.

Students invited to be a BE Wise Peer Educator

 
BE Wise peer educators will be working with staff from the Counseling Center and Health and Wellness promotions to provide educational trainings and outreach on increasing awareness about alcohol use and alcohol poisoning. This includes giving presentations to classrooms, on and off campus students, and other groups that request information. BE Wise peer educators believe in empowering other students to make healthy choices and decisions regarding the use of alcohol. Application deadline is January 15. share

Invitation: Saturday breakfast serves as fundraiser for Philippines

 
On December 7 from 9:30-11:30 a.m. the Bangon Pilipinas! Campaign will be hosting a pancake breakfast at the Alibrandi Catholic Center (110 Walnut Place) to benefit the victims of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines.

Tickets are available this week from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. for $5 at Eggers Hall 234 (AV), as well as at the venue. You can also get tickets by donating via crowdrise.com/bangonPH. Just indicate your name in the donation and that you are coming to the breakfast.
 
All proceeds will go to the relief efforts of Oxfam America, a trusted international non-profit focusing on directly providing victims with clean water, food security, and sanitation for the worst-affected areas.


Calls for Papers, Conferences, Scholarships, and Participants

Call for Papers for a Special Issue of Psychiatric Bulletin: Culturally Informed Psychiatry


Is psychiatry prepared to respond effectively to the changing agenda of globalisation, migration, sexuality and religion in relation to mental healthcare? Increasing evidence points towards multiple factors - such as
culture, language, ethnicity, religion and sexuality - influencing the prognosis, cause, manifestation and course of mental health problems. Such factors can also influence the severity, experience and attribution of illness as well as help-seeking behaviour, coping, adherence and response to treatment during the course of mental and psychological difficulties.

We are planning to produce a special issue of the Psychiatric Bulletin of original empirical studies of both qualitative and quantitative methodology and systematic reviews addressing the substantive issues pertaining to
psychiatry. This will include aspects of culture, ethnicity, sexuality, minority status in relation to service use and mental health outcomes.

Key research areas that we are looking for are:

* culturally adapted mental health interventions for at-risk groups
* cultural competence and evidence-based practice in mental healthcare
* ethnicity, religion and sexuality in mental healthcare
* culture-bound syndromes and mental health
* DSM-5, culture and psychiatry.

Relevant submissions from authors from various disciplines including psychology, sociology, anthropology and ethnography are welcome.

Manuscript preparation

Instructions for authors can be found at: http://pb.rcpsych.org/site/misc/ifora.xhtml

Manuscript submission

Authors are invited to submit their manuscripts online specifying in a covering letter that they are intended for the special issue on culturally informed psychiatry. All manuscripts must be submitted through the manuscript processing system site: http://submit-pb.rcpsych.org. Articles will be freely available through open access and there is no fee for publication. The review process will follow the standard peer-review
procedures.

Deadline

Submissions are due by 30 April 2014. The anticipated publication date of the special issue is in 2014.

Contact email

Please specify 'Special issue on culturally informed psychiatry': tp@rcpsych.ac.uk<mailto:tp@rcpsych.ac.uk>


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CALL FOR PAPERS Performance & Disability Working Group

FIRT/IFTR 2014, University of Warwick, UK
July 28th to 1st August 2014

Deadline for proposals: 15 January 2014

The Performance and Disability Working Group of the International Federation of Theatre Research is soliciting paper proposals for our Working Group from any area of performance studies that intersects with disability studies.

We welcome perspectives from practice, history or theory in any field or discipline. The goal of this group is to have an international dialogue regarding disability and performance and to share scholarly work and best practices from around the world – traditions, conventions and demonstrations of how diverse physical, sensorial, developmental and psychological abilities manifest in all areas of performance. We are also interested in the impact of performance on policy practice in relation to disability or deafness. We are open to any definition of disability or performance.

In 2014, participants are invited to orient their 20-minute presentations in any format towards the conference theme of ‘stratification’ [http://iftr2014warwick.org/?page_id=235]:

•   Cultural stratification: How is disability culture stratified in theatre, dance, and performance in different geographical locations? To what extent is disability culture challenged or reconsidered by local performing arts practices? We especially encourage perspectives from uninvestigated territories.

•   Historical stratification: How has disability performance emerged in different cultures from the past to the present? How might we (re)consider contemporary dance, theatre, or performance practice from a historiographic perspective?

•   Stratification inside the theatre: How is disability theatre, dance and performance stratified inside the theatre system? How (and what) are the prospects for performing artists who identity as disabled, particularly in a time when performance work with people with disabilities may be considered in some locations as "fashionable"?

•   Social Stratification: How does social stratification manifest in disability theatre, dance, and performance?

Additionally, we welcome submissions that engage with a Practice as Research approach:

•    Practice as research: How is disability & performance explored through a dialogue between theory and practice? We invite any contributions with a Practice as Research (PaR) approach to performance and disability.

Please submit an abstract of 300 words (max) along with a short bio of 50 words (max) by 15 January 2014. If we have an exceptionally large number of submissions, we may ask for shorter presentations and circulate the papers or presentations in advance.

Abstract submission and IFTR membership must be completed through the CJO website: http://journals.cambridge.org/iftr.  Abstract submission and IFTR/FIRT membership renewal are already open; you must be an IFTR member for 2014 in order to see the option to submit a paper to the 2014 conference.

You must submit your proposals through the IFTR website; please do not send abstracts to the Working Group conveners.  Please note that there are three options for submitting an abstract:

1.     Submit to the Performance and Disability Working Group (following the guidelines above).

2.     Submit to the general congress (following the guidelines on the IFTR site; please note the conference theme is distinct from the CFP for our Working Group).

3.     Submit to the New Scholars forum (following their guidelines).

You can only submit one proposal and must elect from the three options above.

For information about the general conference, fees, and accommodation, check the IFTR website - [http://www.iftr2014warwick.org<http://www.iftr2014warwick.org/]www.iftr2014warwick.org<http://www.iftr2014warwick.org/>

We would also strongly encourage anyone who is qualified to submit work for the New Scholars' or Helsinki Prizes. Please note that the application deadline for both the New Scholars' Prize and the Helsinki Prize is fast approaching on 1 December 2013.  Full details are available on the Prizes webpage: http://www.firt-iftr.org/prizes.

PLEASE NOTE:  The deadline to apply for conference bursaries is 1 December 2013: http://iftr2014warwick.org/?page_id=258<http://www.firt-iftr.org/conferences/conference-bursaries>.  This is the only funding available from IFTR.

If you have any questions about the Working Group, please contact the conveners:
- Yvonne Schmidt:  yvonne.schmidt@zhdk.ch<mailto:yvonne.schmidt@zhdk.ch>
- Mark Swetz:  mark.swetz@humboldt.edu<mailto:mark@yeca.org>

Join the mailing list of the IFTR-FIRT Working Group:https://listserv.unibe.ch/mailman/listinfo/performance-disability.itw

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/390883004312783/ [search for: IFTR Performance and Disability WG]
Blog: http://performancedisability.tumblr.com/

Please delete the message that you are replying to. Doing this will allow people who subscribe to the digest version of the list to receive messages in a condensed form.

When posting articles please only post a link with a brief summary of the article. This is done to respect copyright laws.

Feedback on the list can be directed to Mike Gill (mikegill4@gmail.com) and Virginia Bemis (vbemis@ashland.edu)

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Call for Proposals 2014 Society for Disability Studies Conference

Disability (and) Sustainability
27th Annual Meeting
June 11-14, 2014
Hyatt Regency Hotel
Minneapolis, MN
Deadline for submissions: December 13, 2013

Direct link to the CFP and proposal forms: http://www.disstudies.org/conferences/minneapolis-2014

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DSE SIG Travel Support Policy American Educational Research Association


The DSE SIG will award travel support to 2-3 graduate students per year. The amount of the award will be based on the funds available for the SIG, after the SIG has provided support to the Annual Second City International Conference on Disability Studies in Education. 

Travel support decisions will be made by the DSE SIG Executive Committee based on the following criteria:

 

-          the applicant is a member of the DSE SIG

-          students submit a travel support application (word document) that includes:

-   an abstract of work related to DSE that is accepted to the AERA Annual Meeting

-   a statement of need

-  a statement outlining how the applicant will disseminate “lessons learned at AERA” at his/her respective university

-  letter of support from advisor/chair

-   status in program (advanced students will be given priority consideration over newer students)

 

Deadline for applications will be March 15, 2014 and applications can be submitted to the DSE SIG Co-Chairs.

Emily Nusbaum: enusbaum@uccs.edu

Janet Sauer: jsauer2@lesley.edu

 

Just a friendly reminder:
2014 AERA Annual Meeting 
“The Power of Education Research for Innovation in Practice and Policy”
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 
Thursday, April 3 – Monday, April 7, 2014


News and Announcements


Disability Related Articles for the Week

The following are recent news stories of interest to people with disabilities and those supporting and working with and for people with disabilities.
Dr. Nora's Top Articles: (7 out of 88)
1.   “Petaluma Doctor Fired for Reporting Patient Abuse Wins Lawsuit” --- A Petaluma physician fired 12 years ago from the Sonoma Developmental Center after reporting rampant patient abuse has received $1.3 million from a jury that ... --- Santa Rosa Press Democrat --- November 23, 2013  (CALIFORNIA)  http://is.gd/DUSN5q  
2.   “DeKalb Teacher Accused of Beating Special Needs Elementary Student with Stick” --- Action News has learned DeKalb County schools are investigating allegations an elementary teacher verbally and physically abused special needs ... --- WSB Atlanta --- November 22, 2013  (GEORGIA)  http://is.gd/JCSpH6  
3.   “Three Indicted for Abuse, Neglect at Somerset Home for Mentally Disabled” --- Three former workers at a Somerset facility for disabled adults have been indicted on charges of abuse and neglect. According to the Kentucky Attorney ... --- WKU Public Radio --- November 19, 2013  (KENTUCKY) http://is.gd/e9oB5n   
4.   “Grosse Pointe Park Police Investigated after Videos Circulate with Mentally Ill Man” --- A Grosse Pointe Park police officer is accused of humiliating and demeaning a mentally ill man , as seen in videos that are believed to have circulated amongst ... --- MyFox Detroit --- November 18, 2013  (MICHIGAN)  http://is.gd/J31asD  
5.   “Students Accused of Bullying & Beating Disabled Teen” --- Jacob Cramer is shy and won't talk much these days. He sits on the couch at home from school, because he's too ... --- CBS 11 --- November 19, 2013  (TEXAS)   http://is.gd/aLd5z8  
6.   “Freitag '14: The Broken Mental Health System” --- Mental health disorders remain one of the most widely stigmatized and misunderstood issues of our day. At Brown, nearly one in five students suffers from ... --- The Brown Daily Herald --- November 19, 2013  (RHODE ISLAND)  http://is.gd/ACJ5oO  
7.   “Disabled Victims of Hate Crimes Urged to Speak to Police” --- "If you are a disabled person you feel as though you are not going to be heard and even as though you are being targeted because you deserve it. "At the event ... --- This Is Sussex --- November 19, 2013  (ENGLAND)   http://is.gd/1wpalc 

Southwest Airlines to offer closed captioning on wireless inflight entertainment in early 2014

http://www.runwaygirlnetwork.com/2013/11/21/southwest-airlines-to-offer-closed-captioning-on-wireless-inflight-entertainment-in-early-2014/

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Interesting interview on disability and poetry


In the new issue of the online journal The Conversant (part of an umbrella monthly called The Volta), Amber DiPietra and Denise Leto discuss disability poetics and their collaborative work entitled Waveform. http://theconversant.org/?p=5638

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Justice Department Seeks to Intervene in Lawsuit Alleging H&R Block’s Tax Preparation Website Is Inaccessible to Individuals with Disabilities


http://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/2013/November/13-crt-1259.html

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Annual Reports (including 2012-2013) of the Center for the Human Rights of Users and Survivors of Psychiatry

http://www.chrusp.org/home/annual_reports

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New Book: Exploring Disability Identity and Disability Rights through Narratives: Finding a Voice of Their Own

Ravi Malhotra (University of Ottawa, Faculty of Law, Common Law Section) and Morgan Rowe (independent scholar) have a new book out on disability narratives and disability rights. It is published by Routledge and entitled, E/xploring Disability Identity and Disability Rights through Narratives: Finding a Voice of Their Own./ Further details are available
at: http://www.amazon.ca/Exploring-Disability-Identity-through-Narratives/dp/toc/0415532353

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Dogs on the Playing Field by Stephen Kuusisto

 
No one gets a free pass to public life -- "public life" -- the elusive goal people with disabilities strive for. While the village square is sometimes difficult to enter often a service animal can help. In my case I travel with a guide dog, a yellow Lab named Nira who helps me in traffic. Together we race up Fifth Avenue in New York or speed through O'Hare airport in Chicago. We're a terrific team. But even 23 years after the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act and 70+ years since the introduction of guide dogs in the U.S. life in public isn't always friendly. Lately it seems more unfriendly than at any time since the late 1930s when the blind had to fight for the right to enter a store or ride a public bus. What's going on?
 

Post-2015 Development Agenda: Perspectives for the disability movement from now till then

 
Dorodi Sharma
OSD to Chairperson, Disabled People’s International (DPI)
 
Since the past two years, there has been a lot of buzz regarding the post-2015 development agenda and the inclusion of disability. Much has been written and spoken since the Rio+20 Summit in June 2012 running up to the High Level Meeting on Disability & Development (HLMDD) on September 23, 2013. The Outcome Document of HLMDD underlines the importance of inclusion of disability in national & international development strategies for realization of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs); inclusion of disability in the mechanisms leading up to the post-2015 development agenda and for the need to include people with disabilities in these discourses. However, the commitment of the international community to genuinely address the disconnect between disability issues and development seemed missing just 2 days after the HLMDD. The Special Event on MDGs on September 25, 2013 did not find much impetus on disability. Although the Outcome Document of the Special Event talks about inclusivity; making MDGs and post-2015 a reality for those that have been left behind; and puts special emphasis on cross-cutting issues and multiplier effect; it does not mention disability.
 
After September 2013, there seems to have been a lull. Not much information has come forward from international organisations working on mainstreaming of disability in the post-2015 development agenda. This paper is an effort to sum up what has happened so far and the steps from now till the adoption of the post-2015 development agenda.
 
Developments so far:
 
The first significant milestone in the post-2015 discourse was the Rio+20 Summit in Rio de Janeiro in June 2012. The outcome document titled ‘Future We Want’ contained a clear focus towards sustainable development. It was agreed to work towards Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that will build upon MDGs and integrate into the post-2015 development agenda.
 
In June 2012, the Secretary General’s High Level Panel (HLP) of eminent persons on the Post-2015 Development Agenda was constituted. This HLP had several consultations and came out with their report called ‘A New Global Partnership: Eradicate Poverty and Transform Economies through Sustainable Development,’ in May 2012.
 
This was followed by the Secretary General’s report titled ‘A life of dignity for all: accelerating progress towards the Millennium Development Goals and advancing the United Nations development agenda beyond 2015’ in August 2013.
 
Disability in the post-2015 processes so far:
 
While it is true that disability did find mention in the Rio+20 Outcome Document and the HLP Report, it is critical to look at the mentions in light of the bigger picture. There was no mention of disability at significant places such as goals, targets and indicators. It wasn’t underlined that disability is a cross-cutting issue, like gender, and has a multiplier effect. The interlinkages between disability and inequalities were neither addressed nor highlighted. It would therefore, be safe to assume that the mentions were cursory at best.
 
It also needs to be said here that the disability movement did make enough efforts to ensure that the issues of the 1 billion people with disabilities are included in the discourse leading up to 2015. This is evident from the fact that there was tremendous excitement in the global disability movement in the run up to HLMDD. However, post September the discourse seems to have lost steam. While, it is true that at the international front things are still churning, it is also equally true that there has been an obvious communication failure with the national disability movements.
 
From now till 2015:
 
The question that many are asking now is what are the steps from now till then? There are two mechanisms that are currently in motion. These are:
 
Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals: The Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals (OWG) was formed in January 2013 as an intergovernmental mechanism to come out with a set of SDGs. It has a total of 30 seats, which means that a number of Member States share seats. The OWG has had 4 Sessions so far. In the first Session in March, H.E. Csaba Kõrösi, Permanent Representative of Hungary, and H.E. Macharia Kamau, Permanent Representative of Kenya were elected as co-chairs of OWG.
 
As the entire focus of the world community was directed towards HLP and the subsequent High Level Meeting on Disability & Development and the Special Event on MDGs, the Sessions of the OWG did not get widely publicised.
 
The sessions of the OWG are working to conceptualise SDGs and are having thematic discussions. The second Sessionin April was on conceptualising the SDGs and poverty eradication. The third Session in May was on food security and nutrition, sustainable agriculture, desertification, land degradation and drought; and water and sanitation. The fourth Session in June was on employment and decent work for all, social protection, youth, education and culture; and health and population dynamics.
 
OWG will have a total of 8 Sessions. The fifth Session (November 25-27) is on sustained and inclusive economic growth, macroeconomic policy questions (including international trade, international financial system and external debt sustainability), infrastructure development and industrialization; and energy.
 
The sixth Session (December 9-13) will be on means of implementation (science and technology, knowledge-sharing and capacity building); global partnership for achieving sustainable development; and needs of countries in special situations, African countries, LDCs, LLDCs, and SIDS as well as specific challenges facing the middle-income countries.
 
The seventh Session (January 6-10, 2014) will be on sustainable cities and human settlements, sustainable transport, sustainable consumption and production (including chemicals and waste); and climate change and disaster risk reduction.
 
The eighth and final Session (February 3-7, 2014) will be on Oceans and seas, forests, biodiversity; promoting equality, including social equity, gender equality and women’s empowerment; conflict prevention, post-conflict peacebuilding and the promotion of durable peace, rule of law and governance.
 
A Technical Support Team has also prepared briefs on each of these themes.
 
Major groups and other stakeholders will feed into this process. Based on the discussions and inputs, the OWG will come out with a proposal for Sustainable Development Goals that will be presented to the 69th General Assembly in September 2014.
 
High Level Political Forum: The first meeting of the High Level Political Forumwas held on September 24, 2013. Heads of States and high-ranking dignitaries attended this meeting to underline their commitment to continue action on sustainable development at the highest levels. However, it is yet not clear as to how the modalities of this Forum will work and how, if at all, civil society can feed into this process.
 
The final post-2015 development agenda:Once the OWG submits its proposal in September 2014, all processes that have happened so far will be converged. This includes the HLP recommendations, the Secretary General’s Report, the World We Want surveys, the OWG proposal, etc. There are probabilities that other consultations may be organised before September 2014 by the UN, but nothing concrete has been heard or seen so far.  From September 2014 till 2015, the onus will be on the Member States to discuss, debate and finally arrive at a development framework for 2015-2030.
Role of the grassroots disability movement:
 
The discourse on inclusion of disability in the post-2015 development agenda has so far been restricted to New York and Geneva and the international platforms. However, what is increasingly becoming clear is that ultimately whatever development agenda is agreed upon by the Member States hinges hugely on what the National Governments decide as their priorities. Unfortunately, there have been no proactive efforts on the part of the international community to engage with the grassroots national disability movements. This needs to change and needs to change fast if we are truly serious about seeing disability as a cross-cutting issue across all goals, targets and indicators of the post-2015 development agenda.
 
How do grassroots movements get involved:
 
The grassroots national disability movements need to study and understand the relevance of the discourse on post-2015 development agenda. What the international discourse is acutely lacking in is an understanding of the global South realities.Many governments of the global South have shown apathy towards the MDGs. They have not accepted international markers for development and have preferred to use their own targets and indicators. However, the MDGs are universal in nature and they are not different from what these governments consider to be their nationally relevant goals. For instance, a development goal could be universal healthcare. National governments may not adopt ‘universal healthcare’ as their own target but may be prioritising schemes related to this goal in the form of free medicines, setting up rural health centres, etc.
 
The bottomline is many governments and bureaucrats in the global South are baffled by technical language used by international development practitioners. The grassroots movements therefore, have the critical role of breaking down this jargon to simple operational guidelines for local implementation.
 
Any and all development framework will ultimately come down to negotiations between Member States.Therefore, it will be very shortsighted to not keep the chain of communication with the grassroots movements, especially of the global South where 800 million of the world’s 1 billion people with disabilities live.
 
So, what can you do:
  • Keep yourself informed about the processes from now till 2015. Remember, knowledge is power.
  • Develop national level advocacy campaigns to convince your governments to talk about disability in all their negotiations regarding the post-2015 development agenda.
  • Advocate with your government to include disability in their list of priorities for the post-2015 development agenda.
 
The key to inclusion of disability in the post-2015 development agenda lies with you. It will not be a viable strategy to attach undue importance to lobbying only in New York and Geneva. Change has to come from the ground.
 
 
 
For more information, please email at osd.dpichairperson@gmail.com or visit www.dpi.org

Group advocates for UN disability rights treaty by Anna Merod (Daily Orange)

 


Disability Cultural Center
105 Hoople Building
805 South Crouse Ave
Syracuse, NY 13244

Email: sudcc@syr.edu
Phone: (315) 443-4486
Fax: (315) 443-0193

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